Every semester we receive thousands of students just like you. All these students may now know what to do with so much free time, so here’s a list with some ideas. You can copy this list or you might push your creative mind and build an amazing to do list!
If you never traveled before, you don’t know how amazing it is to just wander around a new city and discover amazing things. You have street art, statues and the local culture to learn! The country you’ve chosen to do Erasmus might have amazing gems you don’t even know about but, if you prefer to be cliché, try Paris, Amsterdam or Barcelona, of course.
If you have a tablet or a smartphone, you are halfway of installing an E-reader app and start reading! You can also buy English books in our stores or online. If you have free time to spare, you can go and read the book you always wanted. Tip: Remember that you need to bring the books to your home country, so don’t be generous into buying too much!
Meet new people
As an adult, you need to master networking you want to be successful in your business. As someone who wasn’t born with this talent, you are on your golden years to learn this new skill! Just hang out to a club, coffee shop or hostel and start meeting new people. If you are shy, you can also visit Websites like Couchsurfing to organize a meeting between locals and international students.
Have a Drink
If you are shy even after organizing a meeting, why not loosen up a bit by trying a new drink. You can meet new people in a club or at a bar. Remember to drink responsibly while you are in a new place!
Learn a new language
Employers love when their candidates know more than one language. Your CV becomes even more highlighted if you learn a new language while you are abroad. It shows the employer that you are easier to handle in tough situations. You have the time of your life right now so why not make it easier to order a meal and enhance your CV? Win-win situation am I right? You can visit your international office or ask your teachers if they know anyone who can teach you. If they don’t know anything, the internet is an amazing tool.
Hook up with a local
There is no more easy way to learn the culture than to be with someone that knows everything about the language, town, and country that you are in. You will learn and grow a lot. But, if you are very reserved or already have a partner, why don’t you try something softer, like…
Have an Erasmus Buddy
A competent Erasmus buddy is someone who is more than just a friend. He/she will meet you when you arrive at your Erasmus city and help you with anything you might need. He/she will also know everything about where to eat, where to stay and what to do in the town. He will be your best friend because he/she doesn’t expect anything in return (or maybe just your smile and happiness).
Try new food
Food unites people, and by eating things you have never eaten before, you will merge into the culture. To understand a new culture, it’s fundamental that you try their food. Like what was in your plate? Amazing! Did you hate it? Well, it’s normal. You can’t enjoy everything! If you are going to Portugal, please check what to eat around here.
Get used to the new culture
Different cultures have different customs, and that might be crazy for some people. If you live in the eastern part of Europe, it might be normal for you to eat dinner at 5pm, but in the west, we eat dinner at 8pm or 10pm. It’s crazy, but you need to get used to our schedule. Why? If you are not going to adapt to a new culture now, when will you? It might be very hard at first, but after a week or two, you might not even notice the changes anymore.
You might think that souvenirs are a waste of money, but many regret not buying them after returning home. Souvenirs are memories of the amazing time that you passed in the town or country you were visiting. From shot glasses to fridge magnets and towels, you have tons of stuff to choose from.
Explore your Erasmus city
It’s not healthy to stick to the same places or streets over and over again. The best thing you can do is to put running shoes and run or walk around new places. You will see that new restaurant that just opened or the local shop that have the cheapest T-shirts you have ever seen!
Do something you never did before
For most of you, you are already doing something new. Getting out of your comfort zone for 6 months or 1 year isn’t for everyone. Always wanted to skydive? Now there’s the chance! Always wanted to be on a boat? Now it’s your chance! Always wanted to explore new countries? Now it’s the best time to do that!
Take a lot of pictures
With a DSLR or your smartphone camera, anything does the trick. You don’t need to be an amazing photographer to take good pictures. Just take the pictures you need, to look at them in the future and think about the good old times. Remember that Erasmus is an amazing experience, so document it! You might also have the opportunity of using your footage and make a video to win some prizes!
Get to see a football match
If you are in Portugal, Spain or any other country that loves football, you need to see a football match. You can support the local team by going to the local stadium or you can go and see champions league right in your Erasmus country. Experience the goals by being there, not by watching in a TV or stream.
Of course, this is fundamental. Do not waste time by being like other people or by trying to impress others on social media. Remember that you need to be yourself to have the best Erasmus experience.
I hope you liked this list. Do you feel inspired? I hope so!
Do you want to add more things to this list? Contact me!